Song of the Day

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August 24, 2023

Motenko: “Lifted”

By: Jack Anderson

Here at KUTX, we’ve never been shy about our love of Wild Child; hell I myself even played a show or two with ’em back in the day. But while lead singer Kelsey Wilson often steals the spotlight (and deservedly so), there’s no sense in denying the vast talent toted by each individual member. Among the masterful many is keyboardist-vocalist Micah Motenko, who on top of touring alongside Wild Child and Jade Bird, also moonlights as frontman and chief composer for his mononymous quartet Motenko. Meshing the best retro-soul bits of Muscle Shoals and Motown with modern pop and R&B, plus some impresas of Mac DeMarco and Steve Lacy and Motenko’s eponymous 2020 debut EP’s received nearly a million streams on Spotify alone. On the technical side, Micah’s dexterity has turned him into a two-time Austin Music Award nominee for “Best Keyboardist”. Well, with the release of a pair of singles last summer, some of Wild Child’s road-wise shine must’ve rubbed off on Motenko’s songwriting, since they now seem like they’re breaking out of their “safe” formulas in favor of “riskier” structures and arrangements. In fact, Motenko recruited some of Sir Woman’s awesome entourage to provide backing vocals and fill out the arrangement on their latest single “Lifted”. On top of that, Motenko teamed up with Twin Shadow producer extraordinaire Austin Smith to punch up this already-rich piece of tip-top soul-pop into pure perfection. Fingers crossed that “Lifted” gets the live treatment when Motenko plays midnight next Wednesday at C-Boy’s Heart & Soul with openers Madison Baker at 10PM and Skylar Rose Wilson at 11PM. So if you woke up tired and hazy this morning and but don’t want to get drunk off the strength of your own will for Thirsty Thursday, the melodica cocktail that is “Lifted” will definitely help you grapple with your own motivation.

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